Tesla driver dies in Autopilot crash

Discussion in 'Car Discussion' started by PointerCone, Jul 1, 2016.

  1. PointerCone

    PointerCone M3 Kng Advanced User Premium Member

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    On Thursday, a Tesla crashed into a tractor trailer that was near perpendicular to the car . Apparently, the cars sensors could not read the white tractor trailer against the bright sky, failed to brake and killed driver.

    Tesla driver was watching Harry Potter movie at time.

    See www.jalopnik.com
     
    Last edited: Jul 1, 2016
  2. detaillls

    detaillls I AM Your Rabbit Advanced User Premium Member

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    Autonomous car still seems like a very slippery slope. Probably don't react to many things. I always wonder who's at fault in a simple fender bender with a self park car.... owner or manufacturer? This whole autonomous car thing seems like a win-win for the lawyers.
     
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  3. RedRocket

    RedRocket * Photon Dealer & Resident curmudgeon Advanced User Premium Member

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    [MENTION=323]PointerCone[/MENTION]

    Hey Bud,

    "Tallyho" posted this story over in the "News" Thread last evening. I believe watching the Harry Potter movie is bogus b/c Tesla claims you can't watch movies on their Dash display.
     
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  4. detaillls

    detaillls I AM Your Rabbit Advanced User Premium Member

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    That's what they said about my first CTS-V.... http://www.cadillacfaq.com/faq/answers/dvdmotion.html

    Haven't researched a solution for the one I have now... lol
     
  5. PointerCone

    PointerCone M3 Kng Advanced User Premium Member

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    Thanks, sorry for repost.......just got up and was watching news. If repost, close thread. I got my news off CNBC and they were talking about it. It's all over jalopnik too!!

    my edit: I went to this guys YouTube page and it's quite possible he was listening to Harry Potter, on audiobooks....Not watching, but listening...

    Q: why did car continue over 1/4 mile after wreck ( momentum??)
     
    Last edited: Jul 1, 2016
  6. RedRocket

    RedRocket * Photon Dealer & Resident curmudgeon Advanced User Premium Member

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    Leg muscle "memory" after his head was decapitated ?
     
  7. romclean

    romclean MiNdLe$$ $ouL Advanced User

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    I doubt he had the option to watch a movie on the screen since it's illegal to do so. That's why you have to do a mod on aftermarket stereos to enable those features.
     
  8. PointerCone

    PointerCone M3 Kng Advanced User Premium Member

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    Apparently, the car didn't initially realize it was in crash and kept going . The semi apparently was turning left in front of Tessy ( doesn't say who had right of way at intersection) and white trailer with no contrast to sky made it difficult for cars sensors to see ( if optical) .

    ---------- Post added at 02:02 PM ---------- Previous post was at 02:02 PM ----------


    Probably an audio book.....
     
  9. jdong

    jdong Premium Member Advanced User Premium Member

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    Right now in the USA, absolutely the driver is at fault for ANYTHING that happens in a semi-autonomous car! The Tesla is very clear about this, and AutoPark/AutoPilot are features that are off by default, and when you turn it on, the car shows a legal disclaimer explaining that the tech isn't perfect yet and it's your job to supervise it.

    ---------- Post added at 12:12 PM ---------- Previous post was at 12:08 PM ----------

    The police blotter says "charges are being filed" against the semi truck, which presumes they are at fault for making that left turn by cutting off oncoming traffic. Except it's difficult to imagine that the Tesla driver is fault-free. A semi truck is gigantic and surely if you pay attention you can see a semi truck trying to turn in front of you in time to do something. The rest of the report reads as if the driver didn't put in any steering/braking input.


    It's really unfortunate because if you look at his Youtube comments, 2 months ago he was saying basically everything I've said about Autopilot (e.g. you have to keep your hands on the wheel, there are situations where it screws up, etc etc etc). So maybe that day was his bad day and he messed up and paid for it with his life.


    But considering that the truck driver is getting charged with something (presumably involuntary vehicular manslaughter?), I would not believe every word that he says, especially about him watching Harry Potter while driving.

    ---------- Post added at 12:30 PM ---------- Previous post was at 12:12 PM ----------

    -- UPDATE: -- FHP confirming there's a portable DVD player found in the car: http://www.reuters.com/article/tesla-autopilot-dvd-idUSL1N19N12U


    Yikes. Sounds like what the truck driver is saying is probably true: It's becoming more and more likely that he was watching a movie while his car was steering itself on a divided unrestricted highway that has cross traffic. Well, if that's true, it goes without saying that this is an insanely risky thing to do, and I sure hope that the media doesn't fault one of the most advanced ACC + Steering Guidance systems on the market for not being able to prevent every type of accident with no input from the driver.
     
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  10. romclean

    romclean MiNdLe$$ $ouL Advanced User

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    So if I get hit in the rear end by this car, whose at fault? The driver or company? Wonder how many law suits can they withstand.
     
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  11. PointerCone

    PointerCone M3 Kng Advanced User Premium Member

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    BUMP for update, BUT they are also saying now that they guy has like 8 speeding tickets in 6 years as well. http://wfla.com/2016/07/01/family-hopes-fatal-tesla-crash-spurs-innovation/

    The other thing about this is the ability of people or even automation to differentiate between object in road due to contrast like snow and animals or a white tractor trailer and the white sky (background). I have the feeling that the car just didn't see the tractor trailer (apparently white) and just kept going about its business even after the impact.
     
  12. lugnuts

    lugnuts PSL lol Advanced User

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    if he hit the trailer (which he did) the truck was already mostly through the intersection. We don't know the terrain or how far the truck driver could see before he proceeded to make his turn, when he began his turn the road that HE could see could have been all clear.
     
  13. PointerCone

    PointerCone M3 Kng Advanced User Premium Member

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    You'd have a cause of action (lawsuit) against the driver of vehicle and also the manufacturer (car maker and its suppliers as well) on a product(s) liability basis.

    ---------- Post added at 06:08 PM ---------- Previous post was at 06:07 PM ----------

    OR if he was speeding???
     
  14. lugnuts

    lugnuts PSL lol Advanced User

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    I had that in there and removed it. but your right if the Tesla driver was speeding or driving faster then the rate of speed the truck driver estimated that would throw off the approach time the truck driver thought he had to make his turn.
     
  15. PointerCone

    PointerCone M3 Kng Advanced User Premium Member

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    Unless the trucker was drinking, I can not see a 3rd degree felony charge in this case, to wit: Involuntary manslaughter. It would have to have been extreme negligence in this case (drinking, texting
     
    Last edited: Jul 1, 2016
  16. jdong

    jdong Premium Member Advanced User Premium Member

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    So I'm not a lawyer but I'll attempt to speak pragmatically/logically about this dilemma:

    In this case, where Autopilot's marketing claim is that it keeps the car within its lane and handles ACC distance regulation to the car in front, I would say there's little that can be blamed on Tesla. Being able to find fault in Tesla would essentially mean every other form of cruise control or FCW or LDW can be legally challenged if using it inattentively results in an accident that the car does not automatically prevent.

    However, I think there can be cases where Tesla's legalese (keep your hands on the wheel, be prepared to take over) might not cut it. Mainly, if Autopilot itself did something to result in a dangerous condition, such as:

    — Autosteer suddenly misreads the lane lines and jerks the wheel towards a cliff / guard rail / another car
    — Adaptive cruise applies a sudden throttle/brake input that results in loss of traction
    — Either one of the systems failed to disengage correctly when the driver attempted to take over


    So far, none of these situations have resulted in collisions that I'm aware of. But if any of those things happen, I think it's much easier to construct an argument for how the car is at least partly at fault, and it's not an acceptable cop-out to say the driver wasn't prepared to take over.
     
  17. PointerCone

    PointerCone M3 Kng Advanced User Premium Member

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    Its very hard to "disclaim" liability where you knew or should have known (despite waivers) that a hazardous condition put the driver in jeopardy. Tesla knew or should have known that "despite" their waiver/disclaimer, that people were going to do exactly what this guy did, that is drive inattentively without regard to the safety of themselves or others. NOW, it becomes an issue of, should this particular car even have such systems when there is a "possibility" that they could fail or cause serious bodily injury or death. IN this case, fortunately for Tesla, there is no children or spouse to have to worry about (apparently) , but there may be survivors we don't know about. There is an inherent risk in anything we do, BUT its also very hard to disclaim that in cases like this. Realistically, Tesla has to know (or should know from videos such as his) that people are driving these "autonomously" and there is a LOT of risk in that. The law will slowly emerge on this issue.

    Speaking from a defense point of view, DO we have to tell everyone about the inherent risks dangers of everything?? And if so, when is warning enough?? The government is NOT mandating these autonomous systems (yet anyway), BUT may do so in the future, giving rise to more defenses against these issues.

    Wonder if the guys dash cam caught any of this???



    ** there's a famous case in FL that I personally know the defense attys who handled it. It is cited nationwide now, BUT it revolves around: " Does a wine manufacturer/maker have to warn you or the user that the cork (plastic or natural) can cause eye damage?? " Now, we know that a cork can cause eye damage if it comes out rapidly, BUT does the manufacturer have to warn of the potential for damage to popping corks?? The next time you see a bottle of wine or champagne, look at the label for risks. The one about damage to others is a result of the FL case.
     
    Last edited: Jul 1, 2016
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  18. woopies

    woopies Lurking Intermediate User

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    Hmmmm, I'm curious how the trailer looked in the dash when it was perpendicular to the Tesla because its ACC should have "seen" it.
     
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  19. jdong

    jdong Premium Member Advanced User Premium Member

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    I guess, where do you draw the line? There was that mythical story decades ago that some person used standard cruise control in an RV and then walked to the back of the RV and caused a crash…. Of course, we can say now that most people know that's a stupid thing to do.

    My Audi had LDW which would ping pong you between lane boundaries (a bit unreliably) but it also does allow you to be slightly less attentive. Mercedes has had that feature for 5+ years now. And of course, all the various ACC systems more or less allow you to just roughly steer the car and not pay attention to following distances.

    It seems like it's not just Tesla — a lot of modern cars have semi-automation features that can lure drivers into inattentiveness. It seems troublesome to establish a precedent for blaming the car maker for ways that their luxury features can make drivers worse drivers. (Do heated seats make you sleepy? Massage seats?)

    ---------- Post added at 02:01 PM ---------- Previous post was at 02:00 PM ----------

    MobilEye and Tesla have both said the current AP system does not recognize oncoming or perpendicular cars. However, the v8.0 beta that's being circulated shows an ability to understand this. MobilEye isn't officially advertising "lateral turn across traffic" collision prevention assist until 2018-2020.
     
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  20. PointerCone

    PointerCone M3 Kng Advanced User Premium Member

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    SO, is the PUBLIC now Beta for Tesla's systems??

    This accident is going to change a WHOLE lot of things about this autonomous driving issue.
     

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